Tobias Hauke receiving the FIH Player of the Year award from Alberto Budeisky.
Tobias Hauke receiving the FIH Player of the Year award from Alberto Budeisky.
(Photo: FIH / Grant Treeby)

The International Hockey Federation (FIH) is delighted to announce that Germany’s Tobias Hauke has been named as the men’s Player of the Year for 2013. The brilliant defensive midfielder received his award from Alberto Budeisky, FIH Executive Board member, at a special presentation ceremony at the Hero Hockey World League Final in New Delhi, India.

“I’m completely overwhelmed. This makes me really proud and I would like to thank my team as this achievement would not have been possible without them. I’m a team player and I love playing in a team sport. This award means a lot me personally but of course our titles at the Hockey World League Semi Final in Johor Bahru and the TriFinance EuroHockey Nations Championships in Boom are as important”, Hauke said.

Hauke is the second successive Germany international to be crowned as the world’s best player, following in the footsteps of 2012 winner and fellow midfielder Moritz Fürste. Remarkably, The FIH Talent of the Year award also went to a German, with the dazzlingly gifted Christopher Rühr succeeding 2012 title holder Florian Fuchs. Hauke added: “This is amazing. Our team has collected four individual awards within the last two years. I think this underlines the immense quality in our team.”

An extraordinary holding midfielder who rarely puts a foot wrong, Tobias Hauke has long been known as one of Germany’s most gifted and consistently outstanding performers. The 26-year-old was a central figure in the teams that won Olympic Gold medals at both the Beijing 2008 and London 2012 Games, and his on-field influence has been on show yet again in 2013. The team claimed victory in the Hockey World League Semi Final in Johor Bahru (MAS) before powering to glory in the TriFinance EuroHockey Nations Championships in Boom (BEL), retaining the European title they won in 2011. 

The success completes a remarkable personal double for Hauke, making him one of only two players to win both the senior and junior FIH Player of the Year awards. Australia’s Jamie Dwyer is the only other player to achieve this feat. “Wow, this makes me even more proud. Between 2010 and now my priorities have changed, I have grown into a key player’s role now. But this is something I couldn’t have done without my team-mates”, Hauke said.

For Christopher Rühr, 2013 was something of a breakthrough year. The Mülheim-based 19-year-old made his senior international debut at the 2012 Champions Trophy in Melbourne where he produced a string of outstanding performances. However, it was at the December 2013 Hero Hockey Junior World Cup where he really showed his class, scoring nine goals to fire Germany to the title and earning the richly deserved Player of the Tournament accolade in the process. Rühr is not present in India and was therefore unable to receive his award in person, with German coach Markus Weise collecting the prize on his behalf.   

The voting for this year’s Player of the Year and Talent of the Year Awards was made by an expert panel consisting of coaches, athletes and representatives from the media. Each panellist was allowed to nominate a maximum of five candidates for the Player of the Year and three for the Talent of the Year. The panellists were only allowed to put forward one nominee from their own team or country in each category.

Although Hauke emerged top of the pile for the senior award, many other world class players were very much in the running due to the number of votes they each received. Fellow German and 2012 FIH Player of the Year Moritz Fürste also made the 10 strong shortlist alongside team-mate Maximilian Müller, Australia defender Mark Knowles, Netherlands ace Robbert Kemperman as well as gifted Belgian duo Tom Boon and John-John Dohmen. Kieran Govers (Australia), Lucas Vila (Argentina) and England captain Barry Middleton complete an impressive collection of world class players.

Christopher Rühr saw off strong challenges from some of the most exciting young players in the game, with compatriot Mats Grambusch, Arthur Van Doren (Belgium), Gonzalo Peillat (Argentina), and Manpreet Singh (India) on the five player shortlist for Talent of the Year.

The FIH would like to congratulate everyone who made the shortlist, with special congratulations going to our winners.   

Previous winners

FIH Player of the Year Award – Men

1998      Stephan Veen (NED)

1999      Jay Stacy (AUS)

2000      Stephan Veen (NED)

2001      Florian Kunz (GER)

2002      Michael Green  (GER)

2003      Teun de Nooijer (NED)

2004      Jamie Dwyer (AUS)

2005      Teun de Nooijer (NED)

2006      Teun de Nooijer (NED)

2007      Jamie Dwyer (AUS)

2008      Pol Amat (ESP)

2009      Jamie Dwyer (AUS)

2010      Jamie Dwyer (AUS)

2011      Jamie Dwyer (AUS)

2012      Moritz Fürste (GER)

2013      Tobias Hauke (GER)


FIH Talent of the Year Award – Men

2001      Tibor Weissenborn (GER)

2002      Jamie Dwyer (AUS)

2003      Grant Schubert (AUS)

2004      Santi Freixa (ESP)

2005      Robert van der Horst (NED)

2006      Christopher Zeller (GER)

2007      Mark Knowles (AUS)

2008      Eddie Ockenden (AUS)

2009      Ashley Jackson (ENG)

2010      Tobias Hauke (GER)

2011      Matthew Swann (AUS)

2012      Florian Fuchs (GER)

2013      Christopher Rühr (GER)